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  • Author or Editor: Elizabeth A. Ritchie x
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Difei Deng
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Elizabeth A. Ritchie

Abstract

A dataset of 88 recurving western North Pacific tropical cyclones from 2004 to 2015 is investigated for rainfall characteristics during their period of recurvature. The TCs are categorized into two groups based on different large-scale patterns from empirical orthogonal function analysis. Group 1 is characterized by an intense midlatitude baroclinic zone and close distance between the zone and TC, while Group 2 is characterized by a weaker midlatitude baroclinic zone and more remote distance between the zone and TC at the time of recurvature. The results show the large-scale environment has substantial impact on TC rainfall patterns. In Group 1, as the TC approaches and is embedded into the baroclinic zone, a relatively strong interaction between the TC and midlatitudes occurs, which is reflected by a rapid increase of environmental vertical wind shear and TC translation speed, the alignment of the shear vector and motion vector, and a sharp contrast of temperature and moisture. Higher rainfall and wider coverage of rainfall tends to be produced along the track after recurvature, and the rainfall pattern turns from a right-of-track (ROT) to a left-of-track (LOT) preference. Conversely, in Group 2, a relatively weak interaction between the TC and midlatitude circulation occurs, which is reflected by weaker vertical wind shear and slower TC motion, a separation of the shear vector and motion vector, and a weak gradient of temperature and moisture. The corresponding rainfall swath for Group 2 exhibits a narrower rainfall swath after recurvature. The rain pattern changes from a LOT to ROT preference.

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Kimberly M. Wood
and
Elizabeth A. Ritchie

Abstract

A 42-yr study of eastern North Pacific tropical cyclones (TCs) undergoing extratropical transition (ET) is presented using the Japanese 55-yr Reanalysis dataset. By using cyclone phase space (CPS) to differentiate those TCs that undergo ET from those that do not, it is found that only 9% of eastern North Pacific TCs that developed from 1971 to 2012 complete ET, compared with 40% in the North Atlantic.

Using a combination of CPS, empirical orthogonal function (EOF) analysis, and composite analysis, it is found that the evolution of ET in this basin differs from that observed in the North Atlantic and western North Pacific, possibly as a result of the rapidly decreasing sea surface temperatures north of the main genesis region. The presence of a strong, deep subtropical ridge extending westward from North America into the eastern North Pacific is a major factor inhibiting ET in this basin. Similar to other basins, eastern North Pacific ET generally occurs in conjunction with an approaching midlatitude trough, which helps to weaken the ridge and allow northward passage of the TC. The frequency of ET appears to increase during developing El Niño events but is not significantly affected by the Pacific decadal oscillation.

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